The usual UV light used to kill insects may be replaced by LED lights.

This is because the UV light, though effective enough for your summer BBQ, does not work for farmers trying to protect their grains from insects. They usually resort to insecticides even though they are toxic to humans.

Visible Wavelength Table
Visible Wavelength Table

A scientific report, that researchers at Tohoku University wrote, found that certain species of insects were killed by wavelengths of visible light. For example, blue light at a wavelength of 467 nm was nearly 100% lethal to fruit fly pupae, while ultraviolet light at a wavelength of 378 nm was only 40% lethal. The 467 nm blue light was found to also be lethal to fruit fly eggs and any adults that survived the light treatment suffered a significantly decreased lifespan and egg production.

Other insects were killed by visible light at a different wavelength. For example, Mosquito pupae were killed by violet/indigo light at 417 nm while pupae of the flour beetle were killed by several different wavelengths of light ranging from violet to blue. Their research found that only certain wavelengths will kill certain bugs and is wavelength and species dependant. It’s a very specific wavelength that will kill a specific insect. Previous research has suggested that some insects die from blue light exposure as it triggers the production of reactive oxygen species, which damage important cellular structure and molecules.

Thanks to this research farmers could use this to kill certain species that threaten their grains while leaving other species unharmed, this would greatly reduce the use of pesticide. The drawbacks are that it would take multiple LED light bulbs to kill all the pests that threaten farmers crops. The UVC light is extremely effective at killing insects but is also a danger to humans and other mammals.

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Jo Smith

Are you saying my LED blacklight kills insects? As most other articles say it doesn’t. Hope it does kill mosquitoes.